(Reuters) - U.S. weapons maker Lockheed Martin Corp said on Thursday it would deliver a total of 78 C-130J Super Hercules aircraft to the U.S. government as part of a multiyear contract, worth $5.3 billion.
The U.S. Department of Defense said on Wednesday that it had already awarded $1 billion in funding for the first 32 aircraft.
The company said it would deliver the planes between 2016 and 2020.
Lockheed said in October it had reached a verbal agreement with the U.S. Air Force for a five-year contract to build up to 83 C-130J transport planes for the Air Force, Coast Guard and Marine Corps.
The Super Hercules planes can touch down on austere landing zones - essentially makeshift runways - and are often used for humanitarian relief missions and special operations.
Lockheed has delivered 60 Super Hercules aircraft to the U.S. Air Force and U.S Marine Corps from 2003-2008 under a previous contract.
Lockheed shares were little changed at $218.10 in afternoon trading on Thursday. Up to Wednesday’s close, the stock had risen about 14 percent this year, compared with 4.3 percent rise in Dow Jones U.S. Aerospace & Defense Index.
Reporting by Ankit Ajmera in Bengaluru; Editing by Anil D’Silva
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